Thursday, January 23, 2014

Costa Alegre, Mexico's Happy Coast

We are continuing to travel south of Banderas Bay, revisiting Costa Alegre, which we enjoyed last season with Bryan and our friend Tana.  Costa Alegre translates as the "Happy Coast" and seems to starts at Chamela Bay at the north end, and Manzanillo at the south end.  In a distance of about 50 miles, there are many places to explore, with pretty anchorages, small towns for supplies, and little islands for bird watching, snorkeling, paddle boarding and surf.
Here's some photos of our stops in the bay of Tenacatita including the small town of La Manzanilla.

Tenacatita is a beautiful, quiet, protected anchorage with about a 2-3 mile crescent shaped sandy beach. There are no buildings on the beach, except one beach resort at the far end.  Early in the mornings, there may be a few guests from the resort walking the beach.

Every day a few boats arrive and a few boats depart.  During our visit, there were an average of 10-14 boats in the anchorage.  It is a very social community.

There are loosely organized afternoon activities for any of the sailboats or power boats, which include a swim ashore, and beach walks or bocce games. Rob enjoyed representing us in the bocce games; I opted to go out on my paddle board when the wind is light, and explore the perimeter of the anchorage amidst the boats as the morning sun came up.
Tenacatita anchorage: Linda from Trinity Rose and Nancy 
One morning we took Shindig across the anchorage to the town of La Manzanilla.
This is the only town on the Bay of Tenacatita and getting onto shore via dinghys is known to be challenging.  Some boaters pay for a water taxi service to bring them from the anchorage across the bay to Manzanilla.  We decided to go ourselves and invited our friends from two other boats to join us.
So with Linda and Mike from Trinity Rose and Pam and Richard plus their new puppy Chloe, from Tisha Baby aboard, we set off for the 3 hour tour.  Two dinghies were pulled behind Shindig.

Colorful buildings in La Manzanilla
The dinghy landings were well timed, no challenges.  We all enjoyed our walk around town, poking into stores especially the surprisingly well stocked little German owned deli.  There are many large containers of spices which the owner will measure out whatever you'd like.  I bought some vegie tortes and a cup of shredded parmesan cheese.  Rob particularly enjoyed the sausage rolls that were coming out of the oven.

Sign for Le Martin's, a nice French /seafood restaurant 
 Restaurant Martin is a special, romantic restaurant high up in the tree tops overlooking the bay.  We decided to have lunch there, and everyone was happy.  It was so good that we''ve planned to return to La Manzanilla on the way north just to have another meal.  Time to hit the beach for some more exercise!

Restaurant view overlooking lush tree tops and beach

Their signature Caesar salad made at the tableside


More fun buildings 

Fish Sign

VW bug with nice paint trim
Mike and Rob with Bentley aboard Trinity Rose

View from Shindig's spot at Tenacatita

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Some photos south of Banderas Bay

Entrance to Ipala, the first anchorage south of Cabo Corrientes

Gorgeous sunset lights

Dorado for dinner 

Catch(es) f the Day!!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Mi Esposo es mal...or Chillin' in Chamela

We are south of Banderas Bay in a lovely anchorage named Chamela.  It is a large, beautiful bay with miles of flat sand, mild waves, and collections of palapa restaurants and modest beach homes.  There is a small town behind the beachfront with a wide paved road, several tiendas and a town square with some stores.
Unfortunately we are here not to fully enjoy each day, but focused on getting Rob better.  He came down with something back at the family holiday before New Years, and has not been able to shake it. We've eeked out about 2 weeks of him not feeling 100%, but good enough to get underway.  The last couple of nights were the worst so into town we went looking for the pharmacy.
I spied an eldery couple putting bags in the back of their vehicle, and asked them if there was a doctor in town.  Of course they would know. :)  We climbed onto the tailgate and hitched a ride several long blocks to be deposited at the doctor's clinic.  There were dozens of women in a cement building, all smiling and no one in a hurry. We checked Rob in, were introduced immediately to the Doctor in his office, and were told that Rob could be officially seen in one hour.
An hour later Rob was examined, and found to have a bad ear infection.  The doctor was carefully writing out prescriptions for antiobiotics, cough syrup, Naproxen and a fever reducer when I returned to the clinic.   I wondered how long it would take to get to the pharmacy.  The doctor then went into the main room and returned with all the medications.  We asked him where we should pay and how much.  He said he could take care of it, and it was as much as we'd like.  With limited funds and change, we ended up giving him 300 pesos, which is less than 34$.  He tried to give us some back, but we said it was for the clinic.
Wowwee!  I guess we were in a free clinic.
I think our medical deductible in the US is $2000.00.  No wonder many ex-pat retirees rave about the quality and value of the Mexican health care.

We'll post more later, when Rob is up and better, as well as us being in a more robust Internet area.
No photos can make the uphill climb to the "cloud" today.

Here's to Health and Happiness in 2014!